Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Cookies in a Jar!

Maybe Everyone makes something in a jar for MOPS, but its because its fun, they are good and everyone loves them... so here is a delicious recipe I pulled from allrecipes.com and re-named :) Instead of attaching tags, I printed labels with a cute Christmas border to put on the jars, its fairly simple, looks good and is easy to slap on the jar at the end :)
5/8 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped pecans
Directions: Layer the ingredients in a 1-quart or 1 liter jar, in the order listed.
Attach a tag or label with the following instructions: Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease a cookie sheet or line with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, beat together 1/2 cup softened butter, 1 egg and 1 teaspoon of vanilla until fluffy. Add the entire jar of ingredients, and mix together by hand until well blended. Drop by heaping spoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheets. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until edges start to brown. Cool on baking sheets, or remove to cool on wire racks. Enjoy!
Read more: http://www.food.com/recipe/cranberry-hootycreek-cookies-in-a-jar-109105#ixzz1f8OncG8O

Christmasy Decor Blocks

I am quite excited about our next MOPS craft... I am asking the gals to bring 1 3/4" photos for this one... between 7 and 12 photos- lots of opportunity to show off the kids here :) Its a modge-podge craft and very easy! First you need 4 blocks that are 2", a brush for the modge podge, modge podge, and photos (I am also providing Christmasy scrapbook paper for those who forget pics) and a diagram of what letters go where- this helps avoid spelling mistakes. The Words I have come up with are: Joy, Love, Hope, Noel, Give, Born, Wish and Star. And the gals can choose to do as many or as few of the words as they like. If you use all of them there is room for 7 photos or scrapbook papers... if they want more photos they can go with few words.
Once all the important decisions are made I recommend laying out the photos as letters alongside the blocks they want them on so they don't get confused mid-way through. Then its a simple matter of pasting the photos on, then laying modge podge over top. Make sure you let one side dry fairly thoroughly so that each block has a side to rest on while the rest is drying.
And as a special time saving gift to someone who likes the idea.... the letters I used! I printed them from picasa using the 8x10 option. hopefully they will print well for you :) Enjoy, and happy crafting!
Oh! and if the duplicate letter are confusing- I simply offered them as options so that they would all be a little different, I realize that not everyone share my taste and try to offer ways to make small changes when possible :)

Monday, April 18, 2011

Fun and Fast Foam bookmarks

I LOVE these! Black craft foam from your local craft store- its in the kids section and super cheap, one pretty doo-dad per mom, roll of sticky-back magnet and some hot glue and its ready! I cut the foam about 1 1/4 inches wide and in the neighborhood of 3.5-4 inches long. Cut the ends with decorative scissors or pinking sheers and then the moms folded the foam strips, peeled the paper off the magnests, stuck them to the inside of the foam so that they connect then hot-glued the decorative bit to the outside :) Viola! bookmarks that won't fall out of your book.
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Cheery Springtime Flower Pots

I was running out of energy with just 2 MOPS meetings left, but REALLY wanted to do this cute activity. So I did a bit of research a week before it was due and found that I could get all my materials locally, thanks to Home Depot :) I got all the 4" pots and the foam brushes and the chalkboard paint. and Its tintable! Rust-Oleum makes this fun tintable chalkboard paint and you can choose from 12 colors :) I ended up with raspberry (shown) a mossy green and periwinkle blue. The instructions reccomend 2 coats with 4 hours of drying time in between, due to MOPS style timing I gave it one coat and said a little prayer :) It turned out great! I did wait the 3 days before taking chalk to it though- I figured I should follow SOME of the directions.
So that is basically it: pots, paint, chalk and flowers! I purchased starters for the flowers and plan on sending them home for the moms to plant, potting soil and carpet don't get along well. Oh, and if you are hoping for a one-stop craft I am sorry to say I had to hit my local craft store for the chalk... but I did find supplies for another craft on sale- making it worth it!
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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

"Fancy Frames"

Got this idea from a gal at our planning sessions last summer, I am excited to do them for our Valentines MOPS. It's a simple one, first you take a basic wooden picture frame- then spray paint it gold or silver, use a glass friendly adhesive- I used E6000, to adhere the clear squashed marbles around the frame... it took 60 for each of these 4x6 frames then add a little embellishment of your choice to really draw the eye :) I have an assortment of flowers and gold and silver leaves plus a few pre-painted wooden hearts to offer.

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Thursday, January 6, 2011

Glass Tile Necklaces

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I purchased all my supplies on e-bay from an ebay store run by "those_sweet_sensations" They had the best deals I could find and provided the directions for free :)
These are the directions provided, with notes from me in italics... along with the pics of my first try.

Simple Instructions for Pendant Making

Remember, if you're working with images printed on an inkjet printer you'll want to use MicroGlaze to prevent the images from running. Apply a thin coat of MicroGlaze over your image and let it dry for about 10 minutes. Then proceed with the instructions below. (I didn't do this and it turned out fine)

Here’s what you’ll need:

Glass Pieces (the actual pendant)
Diamond Glaze (holds the image on the glass and makes the image crystal clear)
E-6000 (holds the bail or magnet on back of the glass)
Decorative Paper or your own images (use chiyogami paper or your own)
Bail (used for the chain or necklace)
Grab a nail file, it will be handy! (optional- I didn't need it)
Pencil (this is to trace your tile- I precut paper pieces)

You’ll be working with glue so be sure to work on a paper towel or such so that you don’t make a mess. :o)

This is going to be much easier than you ever imagined and so much fun!!!

1) First, lay a glass piece down on your work surface with the flat textured side up.

2) Select a piece of decorative paper or printed image to use.

3) Place the paper over the glass so that the undecorated (textured) side is facing up.

4) Now, pick up the glass and the paper and hold them up to a light so that you can see the glass through the paper. You should be able to see the designs on the paper, adjust the paper so that the design on the paper is where you want it to be.

***If using my paper punch skip the next 2 steps***
***You can easily see the image and position through the bottom of the punch***

5) Use a pencil and carefully trace the shape of the glass.

6) Now use your scissors to cut out the pattern that you drew, cut to the outside of your line, you’ll want your cut out to be slightly larger.

7) Now, open your Diamond Glaze. If this is the first time that you’ve used it you’ll need to cut off the tip (just the tip, no more than a few millimeters).

8) Turn your Diamond Glaze container upside down so that the nozzle is down over the glass. Don’t squirt any out just yet, give the air inside the container time to rise – this will decrease the chance of you getting bubbles. You’re not going to be applying a thick coat of glaze in this step, just a thin layer.

9) Next, slowly squeeze the container so that the Glaze starts coming out. Try to keep from getting bubbles. If you do get bubbles just use the tip of the Diamond Glaze container to pop them, or, drag them around until they pop.

10) Apply a thin even layer. In this step I usually apply a little glaze and then use the tip of the container to spread it around evenly, applying more glaze as necessary.

11) Now, go ahead and place your paper onto the glass so that the decorated side is down (in the glaze). Gently adjust the paper so that it’s centered. Don’t press down on the paper with your finger, as this will make a mess. If the paper that you cut is too big, don’t worry, that’s what the nail file will be used for. Let this set for about 30 min. (for MOPS I tested the whole process with only a few minutes between each step and was just fine)

12) Once dry, use the nail file and gently scrape off the excess paper around the edges so that it fits your glass. (I trimmed with scissors)

13) Go ahead and apply more glaze over the back side of the paper and seal the paper to the glass. Be careful when you get to the edges and try not to let the glaze run over the edge, but do try to get your glaze all the way over the edge of the paper so that it seals the paper completely. Once you have a nice layer over the back of the paper let it dry for about 30 minutes. (once again- I just had a couple of minutes)

14) Now you can add your bail or magnet, you can use E6000 as the adhesive for attaching bail. Just put a bit of E6000 down and then place your bail down where you want it.

Allow this to dry over night and that’s it!!!

Like I said, this is so easy,
Most importantly...remember to have FUN!!!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Friendship Soup Mix in a Jar

I pulled this recipe right off of allrecipes.com and am super excited to do it in my MOPS group this week!

1/2 cup dry split peas
1/3 cup beef bouillon granules
1/4 cup pearl barley
1/2 cup dry lentils
1/4 cup dried onion flakes
2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning
1/2 cup uncooked long-grain white rice
2 bay leaves
1/2 cup uncooked alphabet pasta

In a 1 1/2 pint jar, (I used a quart-canning jar and it worked just fine) layer the split peas, bouillon, barley, lentils, onion flakes, Italian seasoning, rice, and bay leaves. Wrap the pasta in plastic wrap, and place in the jar. Seal tightly.

Attach a label to the jar with the following instructions:
1 pound ground beef, black pepper to taste, garlic powder to taste, 1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes - undrained, 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste, and 3 quarts water. TO PREPARE SOUP: Remove pasta from top of jar, and set aside. In a large pot over medium heat, brown beef with pepper and garlic; drain excess fat. Add diced tomatoes, tomato paste, water, and soup mix. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Cover, and simmer for 45 minutes. Stir in the pasta, cover, and simmer 15 to 20 minutes, or until the pasta, peas, lentils and barley are tender.
Each Jar serves about 16 people, it was quite exciting to have all the bags of ingredients to do this with almost 80 moms... if you have a Winco in your area, its a GREAT place to get all the ingredients you need in the perfect quantities :)

Have fun and enjoy :)
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